Mayor calls special meeting

From Staff Reports

The Elizabethton City Council will meet in special session at City Hall tonight to consider the appointment of a new member to council almost one month after the death of Councilwoman Diane Morris.
   The meeting was called by Mayor Sam LaPorte on Tuesday afternoon. The city clerk's office issued public notice of the meeting shortly before 5 p.m. yesterday.
   LaPorte declined to talk about specific candidates under consideration by the council, but said a decision regarding a new council member was expected to be made tonight.
   Morris died on Feb. 10 a little more than three months after being elected to her second term on the council. According to state law, the council has 30 days to appoint a citizen to serve until the next city or county election is held.
   If the council does not appoint a new member within the 30-day window, the mayor can appoint a citizen of his choice to serve out the term.
   The person appointed as the new council member will serve until the next county election scheduled for Aug. 5, 2004. At that time, candidates may vie for the seat as an open council seat.
   At the last council meeting held Feb. 19, Councilwoman Nancy Alsup had moved to hold a special meeting to appoint a new council member. However, that motion ultimately failed.